Well today was my last long long run of my training program. 20.13 miles in 3:18:21. Three weeks to go until marathon day. I ran a total of 43.3 miles this week, which takes my yearly total over 1000 miles for the first time to 1034.96 miles! Next week my long run is only 12 miles. My taper is beginning!
I could see my breath as I stepped out into the dark this morning. There was no moon, like there was two weeks ago, and so I actually had to use my flashlight to see in some areas. My injinjis served me well again, as I had no foot issues (aside from the fact that I can definitely tell my shoes are worn and I need new ones. They should be arriving tomorrow).
The sun came up a little later this morning than two weeks ago, about two miles farther into the run (20 minutes or so). The chill in the air reminded me that fall is on the way!
I had to slow myself down a little bit in the beginning today, I was easily sub-10 minute miles. I knew that I had 20 miles to go, and I didn't want to run into a situation where I had to slow down considerably in the last few miles. I wanted to be as consistent as possible, or even run the last few miles faster than my average. I also know that long runs are supposed to be slow runs. So I didn't want to jeopardize the good this run was supposed to do. I tried to stay as close to 10 minute miles as possible. I did a pretty good job, a couple miles were around 10:15, but some were under 10, too, so average-wise I did good.
The last few miles I picked it up. The last two were between 9:30 and 9:40. Overall, this run was great. I feel pretty good. I'm a little stiff, but in general, I feel better than I did last week with that fast finish to the 12-miler-turned-into-15-miler.
I am still concerned that my marathon goal time is too ambitious. But weird things happen on race day, I've usually gone faster than I thought I could. Of course, this is a marathon, and so I'm prepared not to expect the same things that I can in a half marathon. We shall see!